Bad Idea Promises Largest Collection Of A-Listers On Kickstarter
A month ago, Bad Idea Comics promised that they would "Save Digital Comics From Amazon" and now even more so.
A month ago, Bad Idea Comics promised that they would "Save Digital Comics From Amazon" and that they would shame Amazon, Comixology and Kindle over their terrible digital comic book format.
Bad Idea Comics is a relatively new comics publisher from Dinesh Shamdasani, Atom Freeman, Joshua Johns, Karl Bollers, and Anthony Militano. A direct-to-retailer publisher, eschewing digital, variants and trade paperbacks in favour of one-cover one-per-person comic book sales from big comic book names. and some very silly promotional ideas. And now that includes changing their mind about digital comics, it seems. Or at least just for once. For The Ends: Pro Edition. Via Kickstarter. And they are doing that by aiming the cannon at Amazon.
It launches today on Kickstarter. And they are calling it "The Largest Collection Of A-List Superstar Creators In Kickstarter History". That "digital comics can be so more than they are, and we're going to prove it. That's why we're bringing David Lapham's thrilling modern masterpiece, THE ENDS, to the digital masses, along with an ALL-STAR roster of A-List creators who've come together, for the very first time, to celebrate the visionary genius himself."
So… they are not actually doing the comic… they are just adding their creds to David Lapham? This is understandable, David Lapham is not only great but he has had multiple careers in comics. At Valiant, he co-created Harbinger, Shadowman, Rai and HARD Corps with Jim Shooter, then joined Shooter at Defiant to co-create Warriors Of Plasm and Splatterball. He was a successful Batman writer and artist at DC Comics. He published his own crime comics, Stray Bullets, Amy Racecar and Murder Me Dead under the El Capitan name, and then Image Comics. He created licensed books at Dark Horse, including Predator, Kull and The Strain. At Marvel, he specialised on Wolverine, Deadpool and Punisher books, as well as writing Age Of Apocalypse. And at Avatar Press, he was a major creator on the Crossed franchise as well as co-creating the Caligula, Ferals and Dan The Unharmable series. So probably a lot of folks are willing to give their blessing as Bad Idea attempt to take Amazon down… here's their pitch.
WHY DIGITAL? WHY NOW? Close your eyes, and imagine, if you will, the experience of reading a digital comic book. The panels are small, and they don't quite fit the screen. Every device is just slightly the wrong ratio. You're using the guided panel-by-panel view, but the story feels disconnected. You're missing the subtle but all-important storytelling cues that come from seeing the full page. And if you switch to a full page display, you can't read the word balloons. Your screen isn't big enough. You soldier on. Pushing through colors optimized for a different medium, optimized for paper, and full bleed art trimmed tighter than the print counterpart. You come across a gut-punch moment. A big double page spread. But there's no impact. The DPS was too wide so your reader shrunk it down. Or worse, flipped it to landscape so now you've got to turn your screen, meanwhile, the moment's gone. This can't be the future of comics we were promised. Digital was meant to give us more. We were meant to have access to the artist's original page layouts. The pencils and inks. The writer's original scripts. The editor's notes. Trivia. Easter eggs. Millions of new colors only digital can display. The ability to zoom in on the tiniest details. Deleted scenes. Alternate endings. Additional story. And so, so, so many brand-new digitally native features. Every other form of entertainment got exactly that. So…what happened?
AMAZON. ComiXology, who had already forced a monopolistic stranglehold onto what should have been the democratization of comic distribution was bought by Amazon. And Amazon gave up on quality for convenience. "1,000 comics in the palm of your hand." Don't mind that the reading experience is watered down. And definitely don't think about all the things this new format could be adding. In focusing on the short term, they sacrificed the long-term opportunity of digital comics. Last year digital comics book sales accounted for approximately 4% of all comic sales. Down from 25% in 2016. At the same time, music, movies, TV, and video games all have thriving digital arms that have not only added to those mediums, they've reinvented many of them for the better. Thanks to Spotify, Netflix, Steam and many others like them, those industries are living in the promised future we are being denied.
READ DIGITAL LIKE THE COMIC BOOK PROFESSIONALS DO. Enter the one publisher who has, to date, eschewed digital and focused squarely on being exclusively a printed-on-paper publisher. That publisher just so happens to also be the only publisher who has no vested interest in protecting the digital status quo. We're the only publisher not financially tied to digital. So we're happy to blow the whistle on what a scam digital comic books are. Because it's easy to do digital right. Did you know that every publisher is already doing it? Just not for you. When we edit, approve, and send comics to the printer, we do so digitally. And those files the professionals see are magnificent. High definition, full contrast, incredibly vivid and full of art that never sees the printed and bound page. It's high time we brought the level of quality in digital comic books that we the professionals see to you, the readers. We're pulling out all the stops to build a showcase digital comic book so everyone can see everything that's possible. Something you can all point to and demand from Amazon and everyone else who makes digital comics. But we need your help to do that.
A MASTERPIECE MADE BETTER. What better showcase of the full power of digital comics than a comic book masterpiece – Enter: THE ENDS. Comic book national treasure and living legend, David Lapham, in partnership with the incredible talents of his wife, Maria Lapham, and the legendary team of Scorpio Steele, Bill Crabtree and Dave Sharpe have been hard at work revisiting the book critics already dubbed, "the comic book of the year." But why revisit something so many already consider a masterpiece? By definition it's already perfect. What happens when you make changes to something like that? Does any possible addition or subtraction sully the masterwork? Can you make a masterpiece better? We now have the answer. Yes, you can. Yes, we did! Never before has a comic book of such acclaim been given so much additional love and care.
Inspired by the success of the no expense spared, five-year journey that resulted in MEGALITH, we encouraged David and Maria to look at THE ENDS with fresh eyes. What would happen if we removed the constraints inherent to every comic book — time, money, page count all no longer factors. Our only guiding light is the story and it's pacing. What they turned in was incredible. We've also left no stone unturned in a quest to reach even greater heights with the story. We're excited to introduce the world to THE ENDS: Pro Edition tomorrow!
Or later today, as I only just got up…